Sunday, December 28, 2008

cat and dogs

a few weeks ago j. gave me a great gift. not necessarily something all gals would wish for, but me? ... i've wanted this particular present for years. tickets to the eukanuba dog show. that's right, be jealous. i posted an excited announcement in my facebook status bar and let me tell you ... people were excited for me!

i can't tell you how many loser saturday nights i've spent in front of my television watching the "trail to the eukaneuba cup" and then finally the big daddy, "the eukanuba cup". i've learned more about dog breeds, handling and showing protocol than any self-respecting cat owner needs know.

so two weeks ago the day finally arrived. j. and i set out early in the morning for long beach. i was panting and drooling on the car window as we approached the convention center and saw the street lined with eukanuba cup banners!!

once inside it was dog show heaven! having never been to a show in person i wasn't exactly sure how it all unfolded, but i didn't care. i dove headlong into the first activity we stumbled upon "dancing with the dogs" (and you know my love for the other "dancing with the fill-in-the-blank" show.)
what i wasn't prepared for was the faaaabulous people watching that was to be had. here i am having my first dog-owner at dog show experience (sister sparkly heart velour track suit over there nearly took me out trying to capture the cha-hooah-hoooah that was "dancing" on stage). the amount of dog festooned sweatshirts, wood jewely and santa hats was worth its weight in gold!

we made our way out of the dance hall and into the preliminary show hall. there was no telling where to go. it was a 10-ring circus. if you stopped to watch the old english sheep dogs, you missed the newfies.

spend a little time watching the breeders prep their dogs, and miss the mop dogs prancing about. tough decisions were made. priorities were set (with a not so friendly nudge from the breeder-owner-showers who really didn't want us looking at their dogs while they got their game faces on anyway, thankyouverymuch!)

on our way out of the show rings area we witness quite the controversy. apparently the ring where the newfies were being shown was for breeder or owners only. NO handlers were allowed to show the newfies. well, let me tell you ... the newfie that came in 3rd was apparently being shown by a professional handler ... something that the man in the gorton's fisherman outfit made abundantly clear. after much finger pointing and general discomfort for all of us lookie-loos, 3rd place newfie was ousted and 4th place newfie declared the winner (well, 3rd place winner).

stressed out by the controversy, we made our way to the agility area where we settled for the next little while. now that's fun!
j. and i agreed that molly's muppet dog breed (bearded collies) were a lot of fun to watch because, if for nothing else, check out what their fur does when they jump!

exhausted from the pressure of performing we decided to make our way to the upper concourse to "meet the breed". holy dog show, batman! the booths went on forevvvver and each breed area tried to outdo the previous one with their "theme". the newfies were there again, on a big makeshift ship (which finally put the gorton's fellow in context!) and the cavalier king charles ... they had a sort of british tea room thing going on. this is about the sweetest 6 month old cavalier i've ever held. i have a soft spot for the little fellers because, well ... they look like j. to me. in a good way, of course.

as we noodled around, i am pretty sure i saw dr. fitzgerald from animal planet's "emergency vets" ... the tall one with the outdated mustache who works with all the exotics. love him! there were more breeds than i ever thought imaginable. j.'s turkey timer popped and he stepped outside for a little non-dog time, but i pressed on...

there were golden retrievers, every kind of terrier ... too many to mention and few i've never heard of, but the highlight was pearl. she's a lovable, gigantic great pyrenees who i swear, loved me as much as i loved her. yes, she actually hugged me.

finally we moved on to the "big show". we went to watch the best in breed, the preliminary to "best in show" which was a black tie event happening later that night. after the up close and personal experience of the "meet the breed", it was a bit of a disappointment, but fun nonetheless. j.and i had our money on this little fella to win the terrier group and he didn't disappoint.

we had plans that evening (a party called 'fat fest', but that's a whole 'nother oprah) so we couldn't stay for the "best in show", but for our first dog show, i'd say we covered a lot of ground and had a lot of fun.

next up ... a cat show? ... or is that just too humiliating to consider!?!?


Molly said...


Seriously I'm laughing my ass off reading your thoughts on the whole thing. Oh the stories I could tell you. It's so much fun people-watching at shows, even if you ARE a show person!

PS I can't help myself but...they're BEARDED collies :)

I've never been to a cat show but I bet that would be a hoot!

Beth said...

I love the pictures Cat! What an experience. I think I have to go to a dog show too now...just to see the people AND the dogs!! :) Sounds like you guys had a great time!

Maggs said...

This made me laugh. I love watching dog shows on TV. It's a family affair to watch the one on Thanksgiving. And I've been to a few in person, your comments are pretty much right on.

Stef said...

LOVE this post! And the picture of the Old English Sheepdog! Thanks for posting that.

I too found your observations hilarious! And I'm not surprised.

There is a movie satire on this subject I think it's called Best in Show. It is HILARIOUS! Reading this made me want to see it again.

Happy New Year!